This is not one of the Morton & Eden pieces uncovered in England about 10 years ago - those were all a bit too white and cleany-looking for my tastes. Instead, I found this XF with pretty toning that is far more appealing in my humble opinion.
Ron Guth: The Maryland Sixpence is part of a private coinage issued by Cecil Calvert, the second Lord Baltimore, sometime in 1658-1659 and possibly later. Calvert became heir in 1632 to a huge expanse of land that later became Maryland. He believed his Royal Charter permitted him to strike coins, which were needed to help stabilize Maryland's agrarian economy. However, once the coins were issued, Calvert was ordered arrested and some (perhaps all) of his coins and equipment were confiscated. No record of the proceedings against Calvert have been uncovered, but the existence of the coins and the fact that Calvert lived until 1675 indicate that he prevailed!
In November 13-14, 2002, a hoard of 19 sixpence was sold by the auction firm Morton & Eden, Ltd. in London, England. The coins had been discovered in an English country house in a small, cylindrical, silver counter box. The hoard contained a single example of the extremely rare MVLTILICAMINI (Lot 785, "Small Bust, Dies 2-D) variant that sold for the equivalent of $50,432.00 to Stack's. Also included in the sale was a late state of Dies 2-B that sold for $17,093.00 and another example of Dies 2-B with heavy clashing above the bust that sold for $15,295.00.
Breen 68 - Small Bust, hyphen before M on obverse, no period after final I on reverse
Breen 69 - Small Bust, no hyphen before M on obverse, no period after final I on reverse. Possibly a late state of Breen 68
Breen 70 - Small Bust, period after final I on reverse
Breen 71 - same as Breen 70, but in copper
Breen 72 - MVLTILICAMINI misspelling
Breen 73 - Large Bust
Sources and/or recommended reading:
"Walter Breen's Complete Encyclopedia Of U.S. And Colonial Coins" by Walter Breen
"Hoard of 19 Baltimore sixpence tops Morton & Eden's Nov. 13-14 auction" by John Andrew, COIN WORLD, January 13, 2002, page 56.
"Sixpence sell for pretty penny", NUMISMATIC NEWS, December 10, 2002, page 20
Louis Eliasberg, Sr. - Bowers & Merena 5/1996:19 (as raw “AU55 or finer”)
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